Music at Westmorland Primary School
- M – Memorable Learning
- O - Oracy
- R - Reading
- E – Experiences (Real Life)
Music is a practical, creative subject that is underpinned by a sound knowledge and understanding of technical, musical terms. At Westmorland Primary School, we aim to develop each child’s understanding of key music vocabulary and their enjoyment of musical opportunities.
We know that we need to offer MORE in our Music lessons and aim to offer a varied curriculum that inspires children to want to create and explore music (MEMORABLE), that allows children to talk through their ideas when composing and evaluating pieces of music (ORACY), that develops their reading skills through introducing basic graphic notation and through reading song lyrics (READING) and that is practical at every opportunity. (EXPERIENCES).
We strive to achieve this aim by:
• Providing memorable learning opportunities for all children to explore music through voice, tuned and untuned percussion instruments.
• Providing a sequence of lessons that are vocabulary rich so that children can develop their understanding of technical terms.
• Giving children the opportunity to work with others to compose and perform short pieces of music.
• Ensuring children have a focused sequence of lessons that explores music technology.
• Encouraging children to listen to and evaluate music that has been pre-recorded or made by their peers.
• Helping children to develop an ability to criticise constructively and evaluate their own music and those of others.
At Westmorland Primary School, we use a variety of teaching and learning styles in Music lessons. A mixture of whole-class teaching and individual/group activities are used within largely practical based lessons to enable children to develop their understanding of musical terms. The lessons also allow children to develop their listening and evaluation skills through encouragement to give constructive feedback to each other. They have the opportunity to use a range of tuned and untuned percussion instruments as well as developing their vocal skills.
Music planning is based on knowledge organisers for all age groups from Year 1 to Year 6. These reflect the skills that children need and follow the National Curriculum objectives. Each year group follows the same lesson theme each half term that build progressively through the years. Key musical terms are taught explicitly and vocabulary is embedded within the children’s learning so that they can develop their ability to talk about music coherently and effectively.
An understanding and enjoyment of Music begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage through child led continuous provision experiences and adult led group activities. Our foundation stage baseline assessments highlight low listening and attention levels so music is also utilised as a tool to encourage development in this area and Phase 1 of phonics. EYFS staff provide a range of memorable music experiences that encourage exploration of percussion instruments and voice in both the indoor and outdoor learning environments.
Our school has a wide range of resources to support the teaching of Music across the school. Percussion instruments are all stored on labelled trollies in the Key Stage 2 corridor and are available for all teachers to use when they need to.
Music is assessed through judgements of how well children demonstrate their understanding of taught musical terms and skills in the following ways:
• Observations of the children during each lesson
• Listening to the children’s ideas and evaluations during group discussions
• Assessing the children's learning against the objectives for their half-termly unit using the assessment pro-forma.
Planning and the portfolio is monitored by the Music team when requested by the Senior Management Team. Lessons are also observed by the music team across each key stage so that an accurate picture of childrens’ experiences in music is created. Pupil voice also forms a part of these observations to enhance the teams’ understanding of lessons across the school. The work of the co-ordinator also involves supporting colleagues in the teaching of Music and being informed about current developments in the subject.
SEN & Equal Opportunities:
As teaching professionals, we wish to ensure that the relevant parts of the curriculum are accessible to all. Teachers differentiate by task and support in order that children with special educational needs, including gifted and talented children, can reach their full potential. At Westmorland, we are keen to ensure that all children are treated equally regardless of race, religion, gender, social background or ability as much as their individual needs allow it.